Pack for a Purpose is a relatively new charity set up by a couple who realized during their first trip in Africa that they could have maximized their weight allowance and packed in their suitcases so many useful items for the local communities.
By partnering with hotels around the world who are involved in local community work (from the Ritz Carlton in Istanbul to ecolodges in Laos), Pack for a Purpose allows travellers to find out what the local charities in their destination might need. There is a useful map for each country in the program indicating the various partners who ready to collect donated items.
To put things in perspective, for only 5pounds (2.27kilos), you can bring 400 pencils, or 5 deflated soccer balls, or a stethoscope+a blood pressure cuff + 500 band aids. As families, we very likely have “unused weight allowance” in our suitcases (unless travelling with dreadful Ryanair..) because children rarely need to pack much – yet they still pay full price plane tickets.
The idea is simple yet very smart:
1. Select your destination.
2. Find a lodging and a project it supports.
3. Choose the supplies you wish to bring from the specific items requested.
4. Drop off the supplies at the lodging.
5. The supplies will then be delivered to the community-based project.
Add Pack for a Purpose on your to do list for your next trip and help spread the word by asking the hotels that you are visiting to take part in the program.